The imagery associated with the new wave of wearable technology such as Apple Watch and Google Glass has been fairly standard up until now. Busy corporate hustlers looking ever forwards, tapping their watch so as not to miss an update. Joggers incapable of going ten minutes without checking their twitter feed whilst still having impossibly perfect hair, their steely concentration emphasised by their Net-a-Porter designed frames. These images represent the target demographic – young, successful millenials, as well as providing the all important aspirational figures for the rest of us mere mortals who couldn’t string a coherent thought together if they had to jog, let alone read the paper.
But Apple and co. might just be missing a trick. My friends don’t check Facebook as often as they used to, not just because they are constantly chasing around after their kids, but because they can’t have their phones handy for fear of them being slobbered on, eaten or flushed down the loo ‘to see what happens’. Most parents that I know are now using their trusty Nokia from 2005 because they can’t afford to replace their smartphone again and so can now only play Snake whilst marveling at how impressive they used to think the torch was. The biggest threat to Apple isn’t someone hacking the iCloud for naked selfies: it’s toddlers.
Apple’s recent TV ad was actually called parenthood – my favourite part was the bit where the dad tries not to freak out on his implausibly cute son after he sprays his £600 phone with water in the garden. Parents are on Apple’s radar but they and their competitors seem not to have realised that most mums and dads would snap up something that allows them to engage in the adult, digital world that their children – who they love very much – are increasingly taking them away from. A way to maintain their link to their friends, businesses and their social networks that can survive a nappy change unscathed – now there is tech that parents can get excited about.